Chiropractics Explained: The History of Spinal Manipulation


Chiropractic adjustment

In the twenty-first century, chiropractic care is becoming more accepted as a discipline of alternative medicine. Due to the nature of this discipline, which approaches musculoskeletal health and spinal alignment from a stance free of pain medication and invasive procedures, chiropractic care has long been questioned in terms of its effectiveness.

Chiropractic care has not always had the support that it does today, but even in the current state of affairs, there is skepticism and disregard for this discipline. Those professionals immersed in chiropractic care have been fighting a long uphill battle to even get to where they are today.

The foundations of chiropractic care and spinal manipulation techniques are rooted in the late nineteenth century, when Dr. David D. Palmer was credited with developing this practice of alternative medicine. He questioned the spine and its ability to determine health outcomes throughout the human body. In his studies, he traced the concept of spinal manipulation and anatomical analysis of the spine back to ancient times.

Over time, research efforts and scientific investigation into what chiropractic care could do for the human body were expanded upon. By the mid to late twentieth century, chiropractic care had gained some momentum as a discipline of alternative medicine. More and more people around the country were becoming interested in chiropractic care and how it could maybe aid their back pain or fix their stiff neck.

By the 1980’s, different members of the medical community began to spread awareness of the perceived dangers of chiropractic care. Spinal manipulation could potentially impact the layout of certain vital blood vessels, leading to cardiac events like heart attack and stroke, was the main view point held by these stakeholders. The American Medical Association began a smear campaign of the chiropractic profession, claiming that it was dangerous and that chiropractic professionals lacked the qualifications that traditional medical practitioners did. As a result, a degree of skepticism developed within the American population and the discipline of chiropractic care took a collective step back.

Today, chiropractic care has achieved a degree of reverence in both the alternative medicine community and in the American population as a whole. As we move towards a greater consciousness of prevention and natural alternatives to traditional medicine, chiropractic care gains acceptance and the scientific research being conducted is backing it up. Soon enough, we can most likely expect chiropractic care to climb another rung on the ladder towards acceptance.

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Used under Creative Commons Licensing courtesy of Alisha Vargas

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